Fantasy adventure games tend to try to appeal to boys ages 8-16, but a new shift in marketing has tried to tackle getting girls ages 8-16 interested in playing fantasy adventure games. A local Seattle based video game company has started beta testing a series of fantasy adventure games designed just for girls.
"There is a somewhat stereotypical idea out there that girls don't like playing action adventure games", said co-founder of Sword in Her Hand, Quentin Burrows. "While studies show that girls prefer games with princesses, cute animals, and unicorns, there are a significant number of girls who enjoy fantasy adventure games. Unfortunately, there just isn't a game out there for them."
Sword in Her Hand is working with local video game designers and graphic design artists to develop a series of video games that cater to girls. While most action and fantasy adventure video games use young boys as the main characters, these series will put girls in the driver's seat.
"All of our games will feature young girls as the heroes of our story", said Burrows. "There are no weak characters. Every character is strong, both mentally and physically. I really think this is a turning point in video game history for girls."
The interest in adventure games that feature girls as the main character came about with the recent increase in urban fantasy books. Many publishers have started to push authors who produce books that feature strong, witty, and independent women as their main character. This interest shows that girls like fantasy adventure books/video games just as much as boys do.
"The belief in the fantasy world was that if you wrote a book you had to appeal to boys", said Burrows. "This was because a boy won't read a book geared for girls, but a girl will read a book geared for boys. I think that thinking doesn't carry over to the video game world. Girls are standing up in the video game worldand insisting that they have their own video games just for them. And they should."
The first three titles in the Sword in Her Hand series has been through several test groups. The reaction for the video games
has been extremely favorable.
"I want to be just like Princess Adrianne", said Meghan Hastings, an 8 year old beta test for the game. "I think she's strong and cool, and someone I want to be like. Plus she goes on cool adventures."